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On the weekend he can take a significant step towards confirming his place in the MCE British Superbike Title Showdown, Ryuichi Kiyonari kicked off his Cadwell Park in fine fettle by pacing FP1.

The Japanese rider leapt to the top of the timesheets in the closing minutes to usurp long-time pace setter Josh Brookes and demote him to second position, while Alex Lowes made it a strong start to the bank holiday weekend for Samsung Honda by claiming third.

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Still looking for his first top five finish of the season, Josh Waters was an encouraging fourth quickest to head up the Milwaukee Yamaha charge, ahead of Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki riders Shane Byrne and Keith Farmer.

In the fight for the sixth and final Showdown position, James Westmoreland got the better of Buildbase BMW team-mate Jon Kirkham, the former going seventh fastest, while the latter could only manage 12th. Between them, PJ Jacobsen, James Ellison and Tommy Bridewell rounded out the top ten.